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tv   News  Al Jazeera  September 16, 2015 11:00am-12:01pm EDT

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point on the highway and at the [ inaudible ] zone which was created yesterday by the hungarian authorities there are many families. yesterday i saw dozens -- maybe even hundreds of children. there were buses which took children to [ inaudible ] refugee camps in hungary. those people who's asylum applications are expected, and again it confirms that there are many families with children. thank god they are not here. they didn't get tear gas in their eyes and nose and they were not sprayed from all of the chemicals. >> thank you very much, indeed for talking to us. we're going to take you to another point of this crisis. this is a newly opened-up point in the refugee crisis affecting
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europe. this is the scene which is in a serbian town on the border with croatia. now these are refugees who by the looks of it -- yes, they have been bussed to this point. our correspondent is there and can tell us about the journey that these people have undertaken to get to this point, and indeed about the kind of reception they might get. marco, are you with me? >> yeah, i'm here. the pictures we are seeing now -- these are the two buses that came from the borderline between serbia and hungary. these are the people who went from macedonia to serbia, to try to reach hungary and try to reach probably germany as everybody is saying that. but they couldn't cross the
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border because it was blocked by hungarian police and military, so as they told me, they got information from red cross, from serbian government, they were saying go to the buses, go to the border from serbia and croatia, and you can cross into european union so they listened to those advises and came here. these -- we see maybe 150, 20 0 people that came at the moment, before this there were 400 people that came and went to the border with croatia. now you -- you don't see the regular border crossing here. this is some dusty road that it is two kilometers from regular border between serbia and croatia, and they are going on alternative routes into croatia. >> okay. marco, thank you very much indeed for giving us an update
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on the situation there as these refugees hope to get into croatia and into the european union that way. let's take you back now though to the hungarian serbian border. our correspondent mohammed jamjoom is there, and we're looking at the live pictures mohammed, and it does appear as though the riot polices and newly deployed units of riot police have come into the situation. >> reporter: that's right. there is definitely more of a police presence on the hungarian side of the border, now, riot police. and it seems as though these young men who has been in this standoff, that their mood has become more defiant. we see young men come back after being water boarded, they go
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back and throw more rocks. they started throwing rocks towards the riot police. the riot police respond by deploying the water cannon spraying these men. we keep hearing the young men chanting that say want to get into hungary. and now we're seeing them clapping despite the fact there are more police, now more young men running towards the front line where the clashes are happening. just bear with me a second. let me try to move a little bit closer and see exactly what is happening. more young men running towards that front line. more police arriving. it just does seem to be getting more tense by the moment. martine. >> yeah, in fact we are looking at the live shot which is not very far away from you, and it does look as though we're seeing the aftermath of some sort of
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gas being used. there are swirls of gray-colored gas being used, but there seem to be more and more young guys with backpacks walking towards that border. now earlier we were talking to a unhgr representative, and he suggested that this melee was ignited by the riot police. >> reporter: that is something we have heard echoed here. a few syrian men told me they were doing nothing, and the hungarian police started firing tear gas at them. both canisters and the water cannon, and that that's how they came to be so angry and started responding by throwing rocks and chanting for the police and
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saying they weren't going to move. we have been trying to get a comment from the hungarian officials, but so far they have not responded. but clearly they are taking a stance of wanting these refugees that are now protesting so vehemently, they want them to step away from the fence, to get further back into serbia and away from the hungarian border. also just to note in the last few minutes, we have seen more women and children that have moved away from where the clashes that have been going on, and closer to the field behind us, so it seems as though more young men heading towards that front line, defiant in the face of the water cannons and tear gas. we can still very much smell the tear gas, and a lot of the families, women, heading further away from here. it seems the crowd is getting more aware that this situation could get more dangerous fairly
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soon. >> we have just been over to a town of shid on the border with croatia were a lucky few were getting off of buses and were hoping to cross into e.u. territory, into croatian territory at that point. presumably, these people here have not got the -- the resources and didn't have the information that the hungarians were closing their border, and so they didn't have either, they say, the information, wherewithal, and the resources to divert themselves and carry on through a different route. >> reporter: that's certainly one of the experiences we have heard of today. but it's a mixture. some said they were aware the border had been sealed, but they believed because of pressure by the e.u. and u.n. that they would let some in.
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there are others looking for ways to get into croatia, but they have not found out how to do so. several men have told me they are trying to find a way to be smuggled into croatia, because it is taking some time because they don't know how much it would cost, and then there are others who are determined to wait it out, they think at some point they will be able to cross or the e.u. will be able to come up with a solution that the refugees will be transported to another country, say austria or germany. a mix of opinions and emotions after today. it's interesting where we are right now, because when we first arrived at this scene, which is one the foot crossing from serbia into hungary, while there seemed to be a lot of fear and anger, the crowd now in some ways seems somewhat jubilant. more young men have decided to join the front line of this demonstration in solidarity with
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the other men that were out there at first, and in fact now, quite the opposite of what i saw just a while ago. i am seeing women and children joining men in that demonstration that seems to be growing by the minute in front of that fence at the serbian hungarian border, martine. >> i'm just wondering whether the refugees have heard the news that we're just getting that the serbian government is saying that it has been told by hungary that that border where you are, the hungarian serbian border is to be closed for the next 30 days. now what is going to happen to these people. unhcr suggested that there were close to 2,000 people at the separate border points in this area. >> reporter: yeah, that is the question. and nobody here really has an answer for that. you know, i have spoken to unhcr in several countries the past few days, and they have been
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urging hungry to let them set up some kind of staging ground, some kind of receiving to help with this, and a lot of those pleas have fallen on deaf ears. so they wish that they would be allowed to do more to try to meal rate this crisis. and several tents have been set up by the unhcr, and those tents were empty, because no one was being allowed in. as far as the refugees that are here, i have not spoken of anybody who is aware of this decree that the border will be closed for at least 30 days. i think that will cause a lot more anger and defiance in this crowd, because they have gotten angrier throughout the day, but they really feel abandoned by the international community, and i would think that that would
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add to it, but i don't believe that is something that has filtered through the crowd yet. i'm sure there is worry that once that message filters through, the situation could grow more tense in the hours to come. martine. >> okay. that's the situation we're looking at now. looks a little bit calmer, as you were pointing out, the live shot that we have got. people seem to have dispersed somewhat. still the aftermath of burning, the burning tires, perhaps that you were talking about earlier, but people seem to be milling around a bit more freely, so the problem is that for the next month, if this border crossing is going to be closed as the hungarians have told the serbs, these people are going to be camped there. give us an idea of what kind of provisions are being made for these people there? what kind of facilities are there for them? >> well, where we were most of the day in this no man's land
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area, this stretch of motorway between serbia and hungary, there weren't a lot of provisions. there were some charity organizations out there, some u.n. folks around, and aid workers, but this is -- this is becoming as you mentioned a few minutes back, it's becoming almost a makeshift tent city at this point. it has grown exponentially every hour throughout the day. clearly if these folks are going to be here, then they are going to need a lot more help, provisions, food and water. it has been quite hot. we have seen people that need medicaled a tension, but will the serbians allow these refugees to stay camped out on this motorway? are they going to provide another encampment closer by? everything we have tried to find out from various government officials, we have not gotten
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clearances yet. and that's something that the refugees want. they want clarity. they say this situation is not of their making. that if they could just be allowed to cross from hungary into austria, things would be fine. but that clearly is not going to happen. we have seen refugees on the road going to the makeshift site all day today. how serbia is going to deal with that is really going to be telling. >> indeed. and what about the presence of the humanitarian agencies, the international organization of migration, what about the people who are there to provide help and assistance to these people? what sort of presence have you noticed? >> we're seeing more u.n. officials, unhcr officials throughout the day in serbia.
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they are trying to [ inaudible ] we are seeing charities. we are seeing aid workers, medics, but there is going to need to be more. [ inaudible ] border. they know that they are going to [ inaudible ] they have been calling endlessly almost on the e.u. to let them basically take over logistics when it comes to this crisis to help set up a receiving point, and that hasn't happened, and that's one of the reasons why this crisis is spiralling out of control, because there has not been a unified response from the e.u. as far as how to deal with the crisis. >> are you noticing that more new arrivals are coming in from -- they are crossing in to arrive at this point. or is this a static number that we're looking at now? >> well, it looks as though more
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are still coming in [ inaudible ] they have been increasing throughout the last few days. the last 24 hours we have been told that they have increased. but again, anecdotally what we saw today was more refugees trying to make their way, stopping and asking where the border points were, if they could cross, even where we started this morning [ inaudible ]. >> thank you mohammed thank you very much for that. mohammed jamjoom our correspondent live there on the hungary, serbia border. now we can talk to a spokesman for the hungarian's prime minister's office. and he joins us from the capitol as we continue to look at these
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pictures of an increasing military buildup. thank you for talking to us. >> hello. >> we have seen scenes of tear gas, and police using water cannon on these people, is hungary embarrassed or does it feel ashamed today at the way it is treating these refugees. >> i have to connect you because i'm not at the capitol, but i'm standing live at the front here, a couple of meters from what is happening. and we in no way feel we should be blamed for what is happening today. the scenes from last night on, especially since [ inaudible ] this is a violent crowd, illegal migrants, on the serbian signed armed with stones, trying to break through the police cordon that is trying to replays in a
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fence. these are not innocent people. these people are in no way refugees. these are criminals at the moment. and accordingly hungarian police are going to step up its response. >> what sort of evidence do you have that these people are violent criminals? >> well, all of the footage you are showing. you can see they are throating stones using stick, and there are several wounded policemen already, trying to protect the border with their bodies. >> so you will continue bolstering your police presence at the border. what do you intend to do then? >> well, [ inaudible ] obviously a priority. we have been talking about this for the past couple of days and months. obviously the fundamental rules that are [ inaudible ] migrants is not happening. we have provided the opportunity
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and the chance to make their application in a peaceful, legal way. this is not what we see happening. something else is developing. this is back in macedonia, but you have to understand one thing [ inaudible ]. >> are you not prepared to allow these people who have already been traveling for weeks, some of them months without facilities, with -- some of them with injuries. many with small children. are you not in the least prepared to offer these people some sort of facility to help them on their way? >> obviously one thing you could require for a migrant on a thousand kilometers long journey is at least compassion. we have not witnessing any kind of [ inaudible ]. there are obviously illegal border crossings, especially [ inaudible ] hungary, and we are not going to tolerate people
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coming and act without discipline to our territory. >> the police have been accused already of being heavy handed, of overreacting, and actually provoking many of these young men. >> obviously the footage you are showing live now, are not going to represent the restraint. we have been making it through these last nine months without any major incident. the only incident happened only [ inaudible ] and what we are seeing today is that this is an armed mob trying to come across the hungarian border. >> does your government care the fact it is in direct contraduction of international law that is supposed to be protecting people in fear for their lives, not to mention
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e.u.-wide conventions for the protection of refugees. >> hungary is standing firm to face any kind of allegation. and we are convinced we are complying to one international obligations. you will not be able to tell [ inaudible ]. in an armed manner? >> an armed manner? surely you are not suggesting that these people are armed. >> sticks and stones. sticks and stones by all countries legal description is armed. especially when used against police. so they are going to pay a measure accordingly. >> hungary alone stands almost out there as perhaps the most draconian authority with regard to this humanitarian crisis that is affecting so much of europe. is hungary happy with that? >> obviously we are not. what we are trying to do, basically as you suggest, almost
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alone, among the european states, especially at the border, three state [ inaudible ] rule of law, and that is principal on all sides. we have been trying to keep to the international and european protocols, the only request he sent out to migrants that they comply with the rules. you can believe me force and violence will not work to enter the hungarian soil. >> the people who are there, massed on the border with nowhere to go, what kind of facility do you feel that hungary needs to provide for them? >> we provided them everything that is required by international and european law and protocol, the only problem and the real problem for the past days and weeks, in an increasing manner we see people who didn't want to comply. they didn't want to take
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advantage of the supplies and tenting we provided. they wanted to move on. it's not possible that migrants clearly decide whether they want to go and where they would like to apply for asylum. that's completely unacceptable, and completely against all kinds of international standards and the -- and agreements. >> thank you for talking to us here at al jazeera, and forgive me, yes, you are not in budapest, you are in the heart of these scenes. the scenes we have been witnessing of a heavy riot police presence, growing in this border area between hungary and serbia. we have seen scores of young men running to the border. we have seen the aftermath of tear gas. we have seen what you can see right now is smoke, which is
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coming from tires that had been set alight by many of these asylum seekers, and also we saw water cannon being used on them. we heard the -- speaksman from the hungarian prime minister's office tell us what sparked this confrontation was a group of refugees armed, he said, with sticks and stones, trying to cross the border illegally. now within the last day or so, hungary has deemed this an illegal act, which is therefore liable to criminal prosecution. he said that this was the incident that provoked the violence that we then saw. we haven't seen that for ourselves. unhcr didn't witness that, nor have our correspondents, but that's what the hungarian government's representative said. he brushed aside any accusation that the riot police were
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overreacting. he said that hungary was not prepared to bend its harsh rules on immigration into its country. when asked if he would even allow for these people to pass through and for a temporary -- for some sort of temporary relief, he said absolutely not. now as i mentioned, i have been speaking to the unhcr representative who himself was here amidst these scenes. no, this is the refugee program called [ inaudible ] for the hungarian helsinki committee. and he was explaining how the authorities have made it really difficult for the refugees to gain access to e.u. territories. >> what is happening there is that hungary is denying access to the territory of the european union for those asylum seekers, mainly sirians, but others,
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iraqis and all different nationalities to have access to the territory of the european union, and have access to the asylum procedure. they only allowed to enter a couple of dozen persons to a so-called transit zone, which is a set of containers on the border fence every day. so you can imagine there are hundreds and hundreds of asylum seekers who are really desperate, many of whom have a valid protection claim, and they have to queue there and wait for several days to be allowed to enter the transit zone, and even most of them who are actually allowed to enter are rejected in an absolutely unfair procedure, basically in one hour. you can imagine what kind of quality an authority can conduct in one hour, considering all of the different problems that are related to asylum seeking. >> absolutely. i'm just wondering so hungary in
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taking this action is in violation of many levels -- in layers of protection, international legal protection that is put in place specifically for vulnerable people who are persecuted and live in fear of their lives. hungary, of course, is a member of the e.u., but serbia isn't, is it? but nonetheless, they are still obliged, aren't they to provide protection and asylum and protection to refugees. >> both countries have ratified the geneva convention, and the european convention, which does not allow for sending back who have a valid fear of torture of inhumane treatment. both countries have on that level similar obligations.
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in addition as you mentioned hungary is part of the e.u., and has to apply the e.u. legislation, a very sophisticated legislation that foresees very strict restriction for the legal procedures. lots of procedural safeguards under e.u. law. currently both countries are violating their violations. in serbia, there is no functioning asylum system. serbia has granted protection only to handful of people regardless of the several other tens of thousands who have applied and might have valid claim. there is no protection infrastructure in serbia. >> now we can talk to nick miller, the europe correspondent for fairfax media. he joins us from the very area that we're looking at now. that is the scene on the serbian hungarian border. and tell us what you have
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witnessed over the last hour or so. >> right at the gates -- the fence -- or the gate when the [ inaudible ] the violence that we witnessed happened. a couple of young men from the migrants fed up with the -- the situation here approached the border. the police -- the riot police behind their shields responded by raising their canisters. then two men i saw come within a few meters of the gate and through plastic bottles over the gate. and at that point, almost immediately police began firing into the crowd, which then fled. that triggers about an hour and a half of essentially a pitched battle with the hungarian police
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behind the border, behind their shields with pepper spray, they were firing into the crowd. the angry crowd responded first they were throwing water bottles, then apples, and then rocks. about 20 minutes ago, the police had a change of order. they were [ inaudible ] about 100 meters, leaving the no man's land behind between them and the fence. the migrants about 10 minutes ago dismantled the gate. they have now moved forward. they are now facing about 10 meters of are line of riot police. >> when you say the gate, nick, describe it for us. is this not part of this razor wire fence that we have become so familiar with over recent
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days? >> this is precisely a gate in that fence. it's not [ inaudible ] reinforced border gate that is familiar from yesterday and last night. this is a lesser enforced crossing, essentially an old wire gate which [ inaudible ] turned into violence and the police have now retreated to a new line of confrontation. >> ands a far as you are concerned, having witnessed the proceedings over the last hour or so, how would you say this -- this tension escalated. what triggered this violent confrontation. would you say it's the throwing of the plastic water bottles, the approaching of the fence by the young men or the hungarian riot police overreacting?
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>> well, look, [ inaudible ] term what [ inaudible ] who to blame. all i can say is that the crowd was pressing against the gate, but the riot police were pressing back with their shields. there was a standoff. essentially no one was moving. as soon as the water bottles were thrown, the police escalated immediately with tear gas and that set off an escalating cycle of violence. who is to blame? it's impossible to say in such a tense situation. but what i can say is you could take either side. you could say the throwing of a water bottle was to blame. you could say the raising of pepper spray canisters was to blame. you could say that police overreacted. you could say that it's the migrant's fault. what i'm witnessing now is a charge by the serbian police,
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they have broken their lines and charging forward with their shields. pressing the migrants back. people are spilling sideways, [ inaudible ] razor wire, police are pressing forward with their shields. i can't see if they are hitting people? yes, yes, i can see the batons are being used to strike people. there are women in there screaming. i can't see any children. the media are caught up. there are people being crushed against the fence and the razor wire. i just heard the crack of a canister of what could be more tear gas. the situation has guinness ka lated here, and it's a very, very tense afternoon here at the border. and now rocks are raining back from the angry migrants on the serbian side. >> and you say they will being pushed back. where are they being pushed back too, nick? >> they are being pushed
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back -- there was a police line about a hundred meters back from the razor wire gate, the police have broken their line and chargeded forward into the refugees, approached within 5 or 10 meters from them. they are charging back. someone is in the crowd being [ inaudible ] by the police. the police are trying to recapture the gate. they are now trying to close it again. mice -- missiles are flying through the air. this is getting dangerous. i'm going to move back a bit. >> yes, we'll stay with the picture, but we're looking at people who are clearly running away from some form of tear gas. we have even seen very small children covering their noses and mouths as well. some people are running, those who can run, but there are mothers struggling with one or
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two children, some ellerly, and some as we have seen so many times now in this crisis, some who can barely walk who are struggling to get away from what appears to be another on slot of some kind of gas, which is clearly not pleasant at all. nick, have you managed to find yourself a safe place to be? >> i have. [ inaudible ] push people back from the border. the water cannon is now up against the border gate again. deploying the water cannon to keep people away as they attempt to close that gate. >> and nick, we are seeing a couple of people now with injuries. with blood. from what you can see would that be a consequence of batons? >> it's hard to say. it could well be batons. i did see batons being wielded.
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it could also be the razor wire. several hundred has come into that no man's land. when the police charged it was very, very fast. people started running away, but they were funneled into thenar row gap where that gate had opened. and that gate is built strong with razor wire. and could have occurred when people were pressed into that razor wire. >> okay. we're staying with these pictures, clearly so many people are becoming very, very distressed indeed. we're not sure how many are actually injured or whether this is just hysteria. these are people who are not in the best of condition to begin with, are they? they have had these epic treks, so they are not in a very good
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condition, are they. they haven't eaten or slept properly for a good long while. >> no, absolutely. these people are at least [ inaudible ] dangerous journey. they are tired. they have been sleeping in parks. and pitching tents by the side of their road. and they are at the end of their capacity. i spoke to a young man from afghanistan. he said he just didn't know what he was going to do now. he said i'm just going to try to get through the door. and he said he was horrified that the european union was behaving like this. >> from your observations, would you concur with so many others that most of these people are coming from war zones for the most part syria? >> oh, i have been covering the
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refugees for a week or so now. many i have spoken to are from syria. i have also spoken to people from iraq, some afghanistan, and several other countries in that region. i have spoken to people who lost their homes from bombs, who lost their limbs and families from bombs. what proportion of this migrant group are genuine refugees, that's not for me to say. but i believe that a substantial number of these are refugees who have fled war. >> okay. nick, what is before you now? because i'm very conscious of the fact that you are not actually seeing what we're seeing. we're seeing a lot of distressed people, we're seeing young men walking in the opposite direction, but things seem genuinely a lot more calm than they were half an hour or so. what are you seeing in front of you? >> well, i am right at the gate which saw the police charge just
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a few minutes ago. the police have closed the gate again. they put a new chain around the gate post. they have driven their water cannon right up to the gate again. and formed a police line behind shields on the other side of the truck. there is a small group, probably 50 migrants beside me who are tentatively slowly approaching the gate trying to gauge what the reaction will be. some are throwing rocks again, and the water cannon is being deployed again. >> okay. nick miller thank you very much for taking us through some of these dramatic scenes we're witnessing on the hungary serbian border. mohammed jamjoom is also in the area. and mohammed, we have seen developments -- we have seen the
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temperature really raise to -- to very, very high levels. we have seen some people with injuries, with blood pouring down their faces, and we have seen families running away, women running with kids from what seems to be tear gas in the air. a lot of people trying to cover their faces. what exactly are you able to see from your position? >> reporter: martine we had quite a few developments in the last ten minutes or so. more folks got closer to the gate to hungary over this crossing where we're at, and women and children joined in there. they were chanting. the mood turns a bit jubilant, actually, people were chanting and singing, and saying they weren't going to leave until hungary let them in. and at some point those gates opened. we don't know if the officials opened them for the people or if they were able to beach the
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gate. but at that point hundreds more joined in the crowd and started rushing to try to get into hungary. they felt that the government was going to finally let them enter the country. they were clapping, children were smiling. we were walking into hungary with those people, when just a moment after that there was a [ inaudible ] from the front of the crowd turning around. they say they were being hit with tear gas and possibly water cannon, and started running in the other direction, so everybody turned around and ran with them back into serbia. unclear exactly [ inaudible ]. >> i'm afraid we seemed to have lost mohammed jamjoom. the -- excuse me, the line to mohammed has not been terribly good. sorry for that. some lines also coming out -- diplomatic developments
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regarding this. we're hearing that romania has summoned the hungarian ambassador to protest against the scenes that clearly everybody in romania is witnessing. and serbia too. serbia has said that it will demonstrate the harshest possible protest at the use of hungary using tear gas in this way. so we're seeing the start now of some diplomatic reaction to the scenes that we have been witnessing. stay with us here at al jazeera, because of course we're going to keep you right up to date. but so far these are the events that we have seen. there have been angry scenes of violence for the past hour and a half along this border between hungary and serbia. hungarian riot police have fired water cannon at asylum seekers trying to push them through a border post. people gathering close to the fence could be seen covering
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their mouths after being sprayed with tear gas, and the situation appears to be getting more volatile. hungary has imposed strict new border controls. that was on tuesday, in order to try to control the flow of refugees into its territory. this move has created a situation where people have been left pretty much stranded on the serbian side of the border, and this is contributing to the tense situation. so the scene live there at the border as you can see still not at recall calm. joining us now to talk about this a little bit more is a spokesman for the international organization for migration. he joins us from geneva. leonard, have you been watching these pictures? i'm afraid we don't have leonard just yet. we will be getting leonard in geneva in just a little while.
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but let's stick with these pictures, because as i say this is obviously the start of a diplomatic backlash that maybe the hungarians are going to regret this action for. we have heard from the romanians, the serbians most definitely, specifically saying they are protesting against the use of tear gas. we haven't heard from anyone else just yet. but the hungarian spokesman, the hungarian government spokesman who i spoke to a little while ago was pretty defiant. he said he didn't ware about hungary's isolation, or the international criticism that is now raining down on hungary for its heavy handed treatment, he acknowledged that riot police were massing in this area. he blamed the triggers of the situation into violence, upon what he called violent
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troublemakers. he said they were armed. when i asked what they were armed with. he said they were armed with sticks and stones. he said that these were not asylum seekers, these were not refugees, they were violent criminals is the phrase he used. i -- i suggested to him that this was an overreaction by think police. he said absolutely not. this is a consequence, he said, of these people trying to cross the border, which of course has now been made a criminally illegal act. so now we can try leonard again, the spokesman for the international organization of migration who is in geneva. leonard, have you been watching these pictures, and what are your thoughts? >> these images that you have shown are absolutely shocking. this is not what we expect in europe or what the expect of the e.u. and respective members of
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it. we're talking about very vulnerable people. you could see infants being held by their parents. you could see blood streaming down somebody's face. so clearly something has gone awry. this is not how you treat asylum seekers. these are people in need of international protection, so i think we all have to take a step back and think about it. >> this is not how you deal with the situation of migrants. >> i was thin speaking to the spokesman, and he was completely unrepentant, and accused the asylum seekers being the problem in the occasion, saying they were armed, armed with sticks and stones and that they were violent criminals. >> well, at the end of the day there is an international
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convention, the 1951 convention that specifically protects asylum seekers and refugees. it's not for an individual minister in any country in any part of the world to dictate whether they're deserving or undeserving of protection, and they're certainly not criminals. if there is a question of leaguet legality, let's deal with it in a humane way. >> we're getting a little bit of blow back now. the serbians are complaining. the romanians have summoned the ambassador. what can be done? if hungary feels that it is well within its rights to behave in this manner, who has the power to stop it? >> well, i think what we're seeing is the lack of a policy. the result of incoherence and
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lack of decision making in europe at large. that's making migrants despera desperate. migrants and refugees are extremely well behaved and law abiding, and when they see the razor wire coming up they feel panicked. we need to take this out of the immediate security people and see it in the big product. these are people in need of protection. to react in this way seems, indeed, like an overreaction. >> the problem is hungary seems to be viewing this crisis, that is what it is, as an issue of national security. of an inflexion of its borders, not seeing it at ought as a humanitarian crisis, which is recommended that it be looked at. >> borders needs to be protect protected. that's why we have borders. no country can survive out a border. there needs to be managed
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process where people are passing in a controlled fashion. their identities are known and they're being checked. that's obvious. but to simply slam the door shut on refugees is not the way to handle it. let's not put all the blame on hungary. this is an european problem. it's not on hungary alone. hungary is feeling the brunt of it. i think we need more leadership and another push. this is bringing shame on europe, nothing else. >> absolutely. is this anything that you in your job would have been prepared for? this is the greatest movement of people in the world ever since the second world war. is this something that you could have envisioned in your lifetime? >> with the, indeed, we see police forces overreacting all over the world. it is not unique to what we're seeing. it is not a pretty sight, but it
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has happened before. what we need is a bit more control, better management, a bit of restraint by the security forces. after all these are migrants and refugees seeking asylum. that's all what they're trying to do. let's take the he'd out, step back and see if we can get a more coherent response, a more responsible response, and give people hope. let them know that their cases are going to be adjudicated. rather than simply face an iron gate or a grill. >> the problem is right now these people have nowhere to step back to. it looks calmer now. we're looking at the live shots still. they don't have anywhere to go. while europe dithers these people become more and more vulnerable, and some of them in peril as we've now seen. >> there is no doubt that one does not have to be an expert, but one can simply see the footage and see that there are tiny infants, babes in arms in
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people's arms, and if if they're being attacked by tear gas, that's not acceptable. it could be deadly in cases. we need to step back and understand that we have an responsibility to protect people. >> what is your organization, are you represented on the ground there? >> we have a team on the ground, and we're bearing witness, as you are, indeed, and we're doing what we can to urge authorities to treat this in a humanitarian way. but this is a situation where the states are in control 37 we can provide relief, we can provide resources. but at the end of the day the interior ministries of both countries are the ones in charge. that's where the restraint needs to come from. >> leonard doyle talking with us live from geneva. thank you very much, indeed. >> so hungary has closed it's
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border crossing to serbia. for 30 days we've learned for the last couple of hours, this is the latest of series of border controls to be implemented across europe as it struggles to cope with the crisis. austria has become the latest country to introduce restrictions along it's border with hungary. it follows germany, which has brought in border patrols on its eastern frontiers. slovakia has started spot checks, and austria fearing that this could be the new transit points for refugees. hungary has shut the mainland route into the e.u. and has built its fence along the border with serbia. the next hot spot is going to be on the croatian border. marco. we've been witnessing some fairly dire scenes o on the
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hungarian-serban border. we understand that some have been making their way into croatia. >> yes, it has been calm. the scenes that we've seen here, the last few hours. at the moment, refugees are here, they're greeted by volunteers. they've got food. they've got water. they went to the croatian border. that border is open, but
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croatian police welcomes these refugees they put them in buses, mini buses, and brought them to refugee camps throughout croat croatia. >> we're looking at pictures of early arrivals, and i must say that people are looking remarkably in good condition. they look almost affluent. how much would it have cost them to get on these buses? these buses look fairly modern and clean and fit for the job. how much would they have spent on this passage? >> these buss are free. they're organized by the serbian government or any other kind of ngo os in serbia.
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>> but now as the situation. >> okay, all right, so marco, what is happening to the people once they cross into croatian territory? you said that the croatians are welcoming to them. so are they registering? >> yes, they're registering them. they're taking them to refugee camps throughout croatia. they said that they're capable of welcoming some 2,000 refugees. that 2,000 would be reached
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today. and then because they don't have the organization to handle these people, the refugee camps, they are not enough of capacity. >> indeed, so their capacity is sounds likely to be completely reached by today. croatia is one of the new joiners of the european union, isn't it, and as i understand it, it's not part of the agreement any way. >> it is not part of the schengem agreement. so they'll have problems when they want to cross slovenia, austria and through hungary. they can do it from croatia.
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but again, they'll be in front of the border these refugees will be returned. >> yes, schengen agreement. >> yes, the serbs have been outspoken about that, haven't they. how have you managed to talk to any of these people? and have any of them expressed a desire to stay in croatia? >> no. their main road, the paint point is germany, norway, sweden or holland. in serbia, for example, we've got information that 120,000 people have asked for asylum. and they need that to travel
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throughout serbia. but for the 120,000 people who ask for asylum. >> marco, thank you very much, indeed, for talking us through the situation that is occurring. just the other side of hungary at the border with serbia, i should say, the border with croatia, where people have started to arrive. we're looking at live shots at the border between hungary and serbia, where we've seen such violent scenes today. tensions are still there. they're failuring sporadically at the moment. you can see smoke that is the consequence of burning tires. you're with me, martine dennis on al jazeera. the coverage continues, so don't go away.
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to cope... >> we don't know, they stop us here. >> what's being done while lives hang in the balance? >> we need help now. >> i've been asked to keep my voice down cause we are so close
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[ yelling ] >> hungarian police must water canon and fire tear gas at refugees they say were trying to break through from serbia. meanwhile, hundreds of refugees give up on hungary and brave minefields to reach croatia. hello there, i'm felicity barr. this extended bulletin, we'll have all the latest events between the borders of hungary. let's show you the pictures coming from thebi


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